QuiltCon 2015 and Class with Weeks Ringle

QuiltCon 2015 was an amazing event, and we had an incredible time. I’m excited to be able to share it with you. 

I took an all day workshop about working with, and choosing eclectic fabrics with Weeks Ringle. No one wanted to sew. (Not kidding). We had the opportunity, but in the afternoon, everyone just wanted to continue auditioning fabrics with Weeks. Why? The class agreed we could all sew at home, but not spend all this time on fabric play and experimentation. I can’t speak for everyone, but I certainly learned I need to pay more attention to that part of the quilt process on a regular basis.

Weeks is an enthusiastic teacher who really wanted us finish the day with a solid understanding about why a group of fabric choices work together, or not. 

We discussed hues, values, saturation, the scale of prints and other factors that go into selecting fabrics that will make a quilt fun, yet elegant. To begin the process we decided on a constraint, not a focus fabric. (A constraint could be working with fabrics that have a similar sized print in them). Then we built a large stack of fabrics that we thought would work together with it, and edited out the fabrics that didn’t work. 

See the center of this photo above with the solids; Cream, Khaki, Teal, Brown and Black. They look drab at first glance. If you were to look at them on a bolt in a store, they probably wouldn’t be the ones you’d gravitate too. However, when used as the background to all the beautiful colors and patterns you see in the finished quilt in this photo, it works perfectly.

We looked at more quilts made by Weeks and Bill Kerr, her husband, and talked about how each one told a story. And of course, how the background fabric, pulls it all together and in this example,makes the braids the stars of the show.

A braided quilt has been on my “to make” list for years. This one is nothing short of spectacular. It is about to come out in issue 10 of their magazine, Modern Quilts Illustrated. 

These squares in the photo above, may seem busy, but the white space leaves places for the eye to rest. Notice how the squares are in the same value range?

This quilt (above) works so well because the end of each triangle’s edge lies next to another fabric that creates contrast. The inner triangles create contrast too employing this same technique. I am suddenly noticing in quilts and art this concept, which is something completely new to me.

With the above grouping (which in this case is on the carpet), the fabrics play well together, except the white one at the end. The prints don’t overshadow each other and the colors are mainly analogous,orange and yellow, and complimentary, blue orange. 

Below is a good example. The constraint was to use all blue fabrics. The orange and yellow would have worked nicely as the sashing, but….

this fabric choice looked even better. (Sorry about the blurriness in the back of the photo).

In the end, this was the better choice.
This workshop taught me so much. I am still playing around with swatches and now see fabric options in a different way.

Thanks to Weeks Ringle for a fabulous day.

Happy Quilting!! Generally I e-mail my responses and answers directly to those who leave a comment in the comment box. If it’s a question about what I learned at this workshop, I will also leave a reply so all readers will benefit. 

Modern Quilt Guild Webinars

Several weeks ago, I participated in a webinar offered by The Modern Quilt Guild.

“Design Fundamentals of Modern Quilting,” was given by Heather Grant, and a few other participants who are quilters. I learned quite a lot about the history of Modern Quilting; what it is, and what it isn’t, in a loosely defined way. The most important feature of a modern quilt, is that it is meant to be used. Taking that a step further, a baby or pet can use it, and if the quilt needs to be cleaned it can go in the washer and dryer. 

My “Show Off” quilt could be considered modern, aesthetically, but “Honoring The Seasons” (second and third photos below), definitely is not.

Our cat sleeps on it. And I often use it when napping on the couch. It has been washed many times.

Although this quilt took me a long time to make, and it is large. The cats sleep and lounge on our bed a lot. This one has gone into the washer and dryer several times.

Heather offered many great resources; books, DVD’s, etc.. I have checked out several of them, and they are inspirational and have added to my perspective about “many things quilting.” I am not going to recap everything in the webinar in this post. I will devote a post on that topic in the next few weeks.

Today I want to let readers be aware of the great webinars offered by The Modern Quilt Guild, by becoming a member.  

Two weeks ago, I participated in another great webinar through MQG; “Awaken your Inner Color Genius.” Carrie Bloomston of SUCH Design was the speaker, and she offered new ways of looking at color from a painter’s perspective. Carrie earned her degree in painting and art. She also quilts and designs playful and colorful fabrics. Her new line is called Paint. http://suchitysuch.blogspot.com/
As a member of my local guild, Hudson Valley Modern Quilt Guild, http://www.hvmodernquiltguild.com, I can participate in these webinars, as well as utilize other opportunities they offer, such as a discount to attend Quilt Con 2015.

If you don’t have a local guild that you can join, you can become a Member of The Modern Quilt Guild for a nominal fee. That is what I did before my local guild became an official guild member of the Mothership. It was well worth it. Check out the tabs on their web site and you will see all the benefits a membership has to offer.

Also, if you want to start a guild and then apply, the web site tells you how to do that.

Happy Quilting!!